MARION — Columbia City’s boys basketball team held on for a win Saturday afternoon at Marion after the Giants made it a one-possesion game with two minutes left to play. The Eagles walked away with their 12th win of the season, 71-66.
Four of the five Columbia City starters had double-digit scoring with senior Matt Rethlake leading the team offensively for the first time this season with 18 points. Daniel Woll posted a double-double with 15 points, 14 rebounds, three blocks, two assists and a steal. Drew Benedict (17) and Derek Hinen (11) also scored in double digits.
Though senior Brandon Gay didn’t score in double figures, he had six assists, good for at least 12 points for Columbia City. “All-in-all we got a lot of contributions from a lot of people,” Coach Benedict said. “It’s nice to see our guys bounce back.”
Columbia City took a 15-11 lead in the first quarter and a comfortable 38-27 advantage at halftime.
Rethlake started the second half with a bucket, followed by a 3-pointer by Benedict and Rethlake hit a wide open lay-up after a pass from Woll to score seven points for Columbia City. The Giants outscored Columbia City 20-14 in the third period to cut the Eagle lead to five, 52-47.
The starters took over in the fourth quarter, collecting all 19 of Columbia City’s points. After a pair of Hinen free throws, Marion got five points in a row to cut the Eagles’ lead to two with 6:31 left in the game. A 3-pointer by Benedict and a field goal from Woll padded the lead, 59-52 around the five-minute mark. The Giants kept the score compeititive until two minutes left when they were forced to foul.
Columbia CIty connected with 7-for-10 shots from the charity stripe to win, 71-66.
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